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Mission of Love in Quarantine

So you, too, must show love to foreigners, for you yourselves were once foreigners in the land of Egypt.” – Deuteronomy 10:19

This is the anchor verse that Indra and Estherhold very closely to their hearts.  

Showing love to foreigners in a strange land is what compels their ministry as a husband-and-wife team leading Covenant EFC’s Indonesian Fellowship. 

But during this pandemic, how could this possibly come about in this time of restricted physical gatherings?   

Open Doors

God opened the doors. In January this year, there were increasing numbers of Indonesian domestic workers being temporarily quarantined at Community Care Facilities after testing positive for COVID-19 upon arrival.  

From the perspective of these domestic workers, it is certainly fearful enough to arrive in a new country not knowing what to expect. Compounded with the fear of COVID-19 and being quarantined in unfamiliar quarters, it was a very difficult time for many of them.

Through divine connections, Project Nurisa was born.

Project Nurisa, an engagement programme for these domestic workers, aims to love and give hope through befriending. This Covenant-led humanitarian initiative was done in collaboration with other churches’ Indonesian fellowship network. Aside from Indra and Esther, it is supported by 18 other volunteers.

“When these domestic workers get quarantined, they are not able to do much. We want to reach out and listen to their stories using their own language. They can share a lot more when they are able to do so in their native tongue,” Esther said.

It is held online every week and comprises several activities ranging from art therapy in stress management, basic English lessons, talks on family financial management and Right’s Protection by Indonesian Embassy, among others.

Seeing God Work

Through this humanitarian work, Indra and Esther believe that it opened another platform for them to share God’s love — whether by lending a listening ear or helping them process their personal struggles 
 
It really warms and encourages the volunteers when the domestic workers are so receptive to us. In all of these, we really see how God works, Esther shared.   
 
She smiled as she recalled a divine encounter where one of the ladies opened up for deeper conversation. Over time, this worker was keen to understand more. This was one of the many joyous moments experienced over the past months. 

Facing Constraints

Things were not all smooth-sailingThere were certainly challenges faced over the course of the project such as coming up with an engaging programme curriculum, tight resource planning, finding suitable speakers, and gathering sufficient volunteers within a stipulated time frame 
 
However, Indra and Esther recognised that this was not about them. It wasn’t about the fatigue or the constraints. It was ultimately about God  sharing His love and doing His Kingdom work. 

Ongoing Mission of Love

With this in mind, Project Nurisa is designed to be an ongoing humanitarian outreach. Along with other volunteers, the couple continued keeping in close contact with the domestic workers through Whatsapp and Facebook groups even after their departure from the facilities.   

Through this project, both Indra and Esther’s eyes were opened to the many more in need. This leaves us with a sobering reminder that missions can always start from home — and our home mission is to love people. 

“We thank God for this opportunity that we can have an additional avenue to serve, love others and give hope. As we serve and show God’s love, we ourselves receive joy from the Lord,” the couple reflected. 

What’s the first step we can take? “Be sensitive to the needs of others around you, and be ready to step up and help when the need arises,” said Indra.

 


Grace Tan

Grace Tan worships at BPJ Centre, and enjoys a good read, the sounds of nature and a night breeze. She is presently serving in the CG and Hokkien Ministry.

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Daily Devo

Daily Devotional Journal

Scripture:
1 Thessalonians 4:11-17; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-11
Tue, 29 November 2022

1-2 Thessalonians Revisited: Expecting the Parousia*

Observation:

What is the order of the significant eschatological events that we can
construct from these two texts?

Deeper Reflection
OUT OF THE EIGHT CHAPTERS IN 1 AND 2 THESSALONIANS, the Second Coming of Christ is mentioned in seven.45 This strong eschatological emphasis is a discipleship call to eschatological living with eschatological consciousness.We can construct the order of the significant eschatological events from the two letters. Since Paul’s time until today “the mystery of lawlessness” has been “at work” (2 Thess 2:7). Behind this visible “mystery of lawlessness” is the yet to appear invisible “man of lawlessness” – the antichrist (2 Thess 2:3). The end-times is marked by “lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold” (Matt 24:12), and the activities of “many false prophets”, behind which is “the spirit of the antichrist” (1 Jn 4:1, 3). Then comes “the apostasy” (2 Thess 2:3a) – the falling away from the faith, as “the Spirit explicitly says” will happen “in the later times” (1 Tim 4:1). And “the man of lawlessness” will appear and come into the church and try to take control of the church by carrying out further deception in it that will lead many to fall away from the faith.46 Then eventually “the coming of the Lord”, when Christ will “descend from heaven”, and “the dead in Christ will rise first”, “to meet the Lord” together with the alive believers who will be raptured and “we will always be with the Lord” (1 Thess 4:15-17).What is eschatologically most critical is that we do not fall away from the faith. We must then diligently know the truth, live faithfully by the truth and cling steadfastly to the truth. “Your Word is truth” (Jn 17:17).
44 Parousia: Greek for “coming”, and it is used as a theological term for Christ’s Second Coming (see Matt 24:3, 27, 37, 39) 45 1 Thessalonians 1:10; 2:19; 3:13; 4:13-18; 5:1-11, 23; 2 Thessalonians 1:5-10; 2:1-11 46 G. K. Beale, 210
Application:

What does it mean for me to live my life eschatologically?

Prayer:
Write a prayer to God as your response from your meditation on and application of the Scriptures.
Prayer Pointers:
  • Give thanks and praise
  • Pray for pastors and staff: To minister to people with eschatological hope
  • Pray for significant people
  • Pray for those in need
  • Pray for self

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